Two major cities on the front range recently enacted new regulations – and city taxes – for short-term rentals. As covered in my earlier post, municipalities throughout the country have been considering how to regulate short-term rentals, such as those available on AirBnb, VRBO and other popular vacation rental websites.
Boulder’s new regulations, which were conditioned upon voter approval of the new 7.5 percent lodging tax that will apply to such short-term rentals, allow only natural persons who own their property to rent their “principal place of residence” upon obtaining a license from the city. The new regulations do not apply to individuals who lease their homes, absentee owners, homes included in the city’s permanently affordable housing program, or any entity that owns a residence. In addition, an owner looking to rent a residence on a short-term basis must provide the city with the contact information for an individual who can respond in person within 60 minutes of receiving notice of a problem at the residence. Boulder’s regulations also impose limitations on the number of days per year that accessory dwelling units, which must pass an inspection, may be rented and the type and number of guests that may rent certain premises based on the location of the residence.
Aurora voters also approved an 8 percent lodging tax on short-term rentals earlier this month. Although specific details of the new regulation are still somewhat unclear, the city has already begun issuing licenses for short-term rentals within its boundaries, at $38 per license. Licenses must be renewed biannually for $25. According to a city representative, the short-term rental uses, once licensed, will be treated as permitted home occupations under the city’s code.